FOLSOM — Oak Ridge High volleyball co-coach Breanne Horton admits that the Lady Trojans are a young team that is getting better as the season continues. Some of the hard work in practices showed for the Lady Trojans at the 25th Christine Craft Volleyball Tournament, hosted by Oak Ridge.
The Trojans posted a perfect 3-0 record in pool play; they beat Wood of Vacaville 25-7, 25-13 and Del Oro, 25-14, 25-16, and knocked off powerhouse Christian Brothers in three games. In the Gold Playoff Bracket, Oak Ridge knocked off Bella Vista before losing to Rocklin in three sets, 25-23, 14-25, 11-15.
“I think the girls played with a lot of heart out there,” Horton said. “They were really focused on some things that we’ve been trying to improve on. Little mistakes here and there killed us, but it’s early in the season. Those are things that we can fix and make beautiful.”
Oak Ridge and Rocklin traded rallies in the first game of their semifinal match, and with that came lead changes. But the Trojans (2-2) ended the match with a kill from outside hitter Kimmy Tuttle and an ace from libero Erin Krigger.
In the second game, Rocklin jumped out to a 15-5 lead. Oak Ridge went on a 9-5 run to cut the lead to 20-14 lead, but the Thunder struck back by serving six points for the win.
The third set provided excitement toward the end for Oak Ridge. Behind 7-3, the Trojans rallied to take a 9-8 lead after middle blocker Emily DeMure had a kill. But Rocklin had its own run, 7-3, for the match.
“Rocklin is a great team and they adjust very well,” Horton said. “It was a big challenge for us.”
Golden Sierra, which will play Oak Ridge in an intra-county and non-league match at the Grizzlies’ gym Tuesday, had a rough outing at the tourney. The Grizzlies went 0-3 in pool play, losing to Vista del Lago, Nevada Union and Whitney. In the first round of the silver playoff bracket, Colfax beat Golden Sierra.
Oak Ridge, Golden Sierra and the other 13 schools played three pool play matches each and playing best of three.
The tourney was played at Vista del Lago High because of gym expansion at Oak Ridge. There were 15 schools participating in the tourney — El Dorado was scheduled to compete but dropped out of the originally scheduled 16-school tourney.
The tournament was held in honor of Craft, a Trojan volleyball player who lost her life shortly after graduation.